Mod Blog: It’s finally time to change the way we pay

Mike Cook, Partner, IBM Global Business Services

In 2010, the federal Ministry of Finance established a task force to analyze Canada’s payments system and make recommendations on the future of payments in Canada.

They were asked to:

  • Review the safety, soundness and efficiency of the payments system;
  • Determine whether there was sufficient innovation in the system;
  • Analyze the competitive landscape;
  • Assess whether businesses and consumers were being well served; and,
  • Conclude whether the existing payments system oversight mechanisms were appropriate.

It’s 2019, and while some of these recommendations are still a work in progress, Canada is moving forward with significant enhancements to its payment systems, ushering in a new era of efficiency and innovation in the payments landscape. IBM is thrilled to partner with Payments Canada as the lead technology partner for Canada’s new high-value payments system, Lynx. With our unparalleled security expertise and strong track record of managing complex IT projects, we see payments Modernization as an essential driver to keeping Canadian enterprises competitive and secure.

For years, Modernization has topped the list of priorities for financial institutions. But Modernization is more than just a fresh coat of paint. It involves fighting security threats, reducing fraud, meeting regulatory and compliance laws and providing an intuitive, streamlined customer experience. Industry players are also being asked to re-envision their business models, innovate to drive new revenue and compete against a host of non-traditional service providers, all while operating under tight margins.

Financial institutions across Canada are challenged to invest heavily over the next few years to upgrade or replace their existing payments infrastructure in support of this Modernization roadmap, and as the lead technology partner, we are committed to working hand-in-hand every step of the way.

Working alongside Payments Canada, IBM will effectively execute a vision where Canadian Payments ecosystem members can easily, quickly and economically collaborate and consume payments services from banks, other financial institutions or Fintechs. IBM Canada has global and domestic payments experience that enables us to offer value-added services. Whether it’s real-time fraud prevention using machine learning, analytics and business insights for value-added services, or a common set of rules for regulatory compliance and risk management across multiple payment channels, our services are resilient, flexible and scalable.  

We genuinely believe that the best Canadian payment ecosystem is one that allows all players – traditional and non-traditional – to participate. That’s why we created the IBM Payment Centre – Canada, a cognitive platform built on the IBM cloud to foster collaboration, enhance innovation and revolutionize the payment value chain. We are energized to join Payments Canada on this journey and believe we have the trust and security of enterprises across the financial services sector to turn this long-willed dream into a meaningful reality.